Kali Yuga: The Iron Age, an era of spiritual darkness, ignorance, and suffering.
You guessed it! That's the World Age we've been born into.
The good news is, we'll be in a new World Age within our lifetimes, according to the Indian 2012 predictions.
This article will explain what the Kali Yuga is about... and the surprisingly positive aspect of this time of sorrows.
The Indian Predictions for 2012
As we've seen in previous articles, there are a number of ancient cultures who speak of this time as the Shift of Ages. India, for instance, also speaks very specifically of what to expect at this time.
The Vedas are the most ancient sacred texts in India, among the oldest sacred teachings in the world. The first Vedas date from nearly 3,500 years ago.
In the Vedas, there is said to be four World Ages, called Yugas.
The start of the Kali Yuga is dated at 3,102 BCE -- only 12 years different from the Mayan date of the last Shift of Ages!
And the Vedas, as well as the Mayans, foresaw that 5000 years is the Kali Yuga's duration. In fact, the Brahma-vaivarta Purana, Text 50, says specifically that the Kali Yuga will last for 5000 years.
This means that the Vedics also foresaw the Shift of Ages coming in this century.
So what did the Vedics predict for the Age of Kali? Let's find out...
Signs of the Kali Yuga
The Kali Yuga is an Age characterised by an overall decrease in goodness and well-being in the world:
lies and hypocrisy,
ignorance: intelligence and memory reduced,
ruthlessness, cruelty, and intolerance,
money overcoming law,
greed, envy, and selfishness,
laziness and hedonism,
destruction of nature,
beggars and homelessness everywhere,
a loss of ideals, virtue, decency, self-discipline, and honour,
happiness is lost; addiction and suicide common,
people motivated by the basest of instincts,
women, children, and animals are abused rather than protected,
religious leaders amass wealth and householders go penniless,
governments controlled by criminals and terrorists who abuse their power and exploit those they are being paid to protect and serve
There are a lot more signs that are also sadly plentiful in this day and age.
The Kali Yuga Has Defined "Humanity"
I think the most important thing to realise about the Kali Yuga is that it has existed since the beginning of recorded history.
3000 years BCE, when the Shift of Ages took us into this Age of Darkness, is known as the beginning of civilisation... what comes before this time, we have no real record of and can only fantasize about.
Why is that so important?
Everything we have been told is the "natural human instinct" is actually the instinct of the most degraded era of humanity.
When people speak of "man's" inevitable violence, greed, and evil, they speak of what humans are like in only one of four World Ages, the worst possible age. It’s as if we saw a snapshot of a wolf ripping open a deer's stomach and feasting in blood, and decided that wolves are innately ruthless, violent killers.
But what about all the eras of peace, harmony, and wisdom? Those we can't see, since they came before we began writing history down.
In other World Ages, what was natural for humanity was very different from what the Kali Yuga has made us.
On The Bright Side...
Even in this darkest of World Ages, things are not as bad as they seem...
The Goddess Kali
This Yuga, they say, is not named after the Goddess Kali at all.
I find it hard to believe there is no connection, though. Even if this Age isn't named for the Goddess of Death and Destruction, She must surely be its matron goddess!
Kali is not an evil deity, for all her destructive power. She is the one who kills evil. She is an aspect of the Mother Goddess, Durga, called forth to battle the evil that is too powerful for anyone else to defeat.
She is like the reaper who slaughters, grinds, and puts fire to the grain so that our children can eat and live.
This gives us a glimpse into the real nature of the Kali Yuga.
The Benefits of the Kali Yuga
The past 5 centuries are not merely wanton evil and destruction, but destruction as part of a grander purpose. In this case, to wake up the masses of humanity to spiritual Truth.
In other words, we are all called to overcome evil -- the evil within our lower selves, and the evil within our institutions and societies.
So (the most cynical ask), if the Kali Yuga isn't bad, why do we want it to end?
Well, open-heart surgery isn't bad, either.
But no one wants to endure it for millennia!
We have suffered what there is to suffer. We have experienced the unendurable pain that has forced us to grow. When we have learnt all there is to learn from the pain, we can go on -- with deep relief and gratitude -- to reap the rewards of our struggles, and enjoy our well-earned peace!
Kali Yuga and the Karmic Fast-Track
One thing that happens during the Age of Kali is that the time delay between cause and effect is drastically reduced.
In previous millennia, an action in one lifetime might not create a result until the next.
But today the results are coming so fast, it's like Instant Karma. (Just add action!)
Not only actions are generating immediate results, but thoughts and emotions are too. It's as if the power of your mind and hands has increased a thousand-fold.
(This quick turn-around time is part of why we are seeing so much information on "manifesting your reality" these days. We are fine-tuning our awareness of the process as we can see very quickly what works and what doesn't.)
This Instant Karma has a very valuable consequence...
The Age of Kali, while being defined by the absence of virtually any positive qualities, has one inestimable gift that no other Yuga can offer.
It is easier to reach enlightenment with little time and effort than in any other era.
The most amazing thing about learning meditation at this time in history is how simple it is. In the past, the process was much more difficult. People did not immediately experience the pleasing current of energy.
Meditation was tedious and boring and most students gave up. Teachers would often make you wait for a long time before teaching you. Meditation was only for the most committed and advanced students. …
Today, people I meet, within a few minutes of discussing the value of meditation, will begin to draw out that energy which indicates that they are ready.
This is not the way it was 25 years ago or even 5 years ago. The world is quickly changing.
It's funny how the worst of times can also be the best of times!
And it just gets better...
After the Kali Yuga
Although the Vedas don't give any specific date for the Shift of Ages as the Mayan Calendar does, we do know that we are on the cusp of the change.
As we've already seen, there is no consensus on the duration of the Yuga cycles. Except for the Kali Yuga. We do know just when this Dark Age began, and we are told it will last 5000 years.
And according to the Hindu prophecies, after the Kali Yuga comes the Satya Yuga -- a Golden Age of spirituality, goodness, and truth.
The Post-Kali World
It is a time when humanity is closest to Divinity, and the Earth herself is redeemed as holy.
The Brahma-vaivarta Purana predicts what will happen in the new Age, the Satya Yuga. For example...
"Mother Earth becomes pure by the dust of the feet of My devotees [spiritual seekers]."
(I think it's no coincidence that nature religions such as Wicca are seeing a great rise in devotion, as this new World Age draws near!)
The Vedics predictions say that the Satya Yuga will offer us thousands of years of...
Kindness and compassion
Purity of mind
This is the world that most 2012 predictions call for. This is the world you have felt and seen just beyond the horizon.
This is the Earth we have come here to create!
If that's not a cause for joy and celebration, I don't know what is!
The Safe Boat To The New World Age
There is one more thing you ought to know about living in the Iron Age... and that's how to get through it safely.
Remember, above, we saw that the Kali Yuga offers us the fastest route to enlightenment?
The Vedas say that there are two practices which stabilize and support you through this most difficult World Age...
Karma Yoga, or Selfless Service
These practices will also enable you to reap the great reward of the Kali Yuga, which is personal evolution to the highest levels of consciousness. In no other Age is enlightenment so easily attained, with such simple practices.
Mantra is said to be the boat that will carry us safely and swiftly through the treacherous waters of the Kali Yuga.
“The chanting or reciting of Mantras activates and accelerates the creative spiritual force, promoting harmony in all parts of the human being,” as Swami Radha put it.
This is the power necessary in this time of transition: spirituality and harmony are the qualities for which the Earth is crying out.
Karma Yoga is the yoga of action: it is selfless service.
This is an ideal practice for this Age. During the Kali Yuga, the forces of good and of evil (so to speak) are battling... and we are each on the front lines.
Acting with kindness, with selflessness, in compassionate service strengthens the Light each moment.
Selfless service can turn the tide of our attention from chaos and misery to joy and light.
And when you're on the Karmic fast-track, the positive benefits of this come back to you almost immediately!
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